GNOMON: The 30th National Public Relations Congress

September 14, 2023

Keynote Address of Senate President Pro Tempore Loren Legarda
GNOMON: The 30th National Public Relations Congress
September 14, 2023 | 9:00 AM
Grand Ballroom, Fairmont, Makati City

A pleasant morning to everyone!

In today’s rapidly evolving communication landscape, where messages can go viral and traverse the globe in seconds, we find ourselves faced with the proliferation of fake news and misinformation that threaten the integrity of public discourse.

I commend the Public Relations Society of the Philippines (PRSP) for your steadfast commitment to paving the way for the promotion of informed decision-making and forging trust among our fellow citizens in an era of conflicting narratives. This year’s Public Relations Congress provides a valuable platform to reaffirm our commitment to effective and accurate communication that plays a crucial role in nation-building.

As we gather here for the 30th National Public Relations Congress, I am reminded of the journey I have been through from my early days as a journalist to my current post as a legislator. It has been a journey of continuous growth, change, and learning, especially amidst the challenges I have to endure to keep up with a decisively changing world shaped by technological advancements.

My years in public service have taught me the principles of transparency, accountability, and effective communication as fundamentals in fostering trust, promoting good governance, and driving positive change in our communities.

In a democratic country like the Philippines, the government is held accountable by the public for its actions and policies. This is where public relations play a crucial role, making sure that government actions and policies are communicated clearly and accurately to the public. Through this effective communication and accountability, trust is built, credibility is strengthened, public support is maintained, and the democratic process thrives.

Nowadays, the critical aspect of Public Relations is tested with the advent of social media. The role of public relations goes beyond conveying messages. It extends to protecting the integrity of our democratic system, ensuring that the public’s trust is not just maintained but fortified.

With just a click, we can easily connect, engage, and influence the public. We are given a venue to reach a wider audience with the help of social media platforms and digital storytelling through video conferencing applications. Yet, in the midst of this convenience, we must recognize our immense responsibility to combat misinformation and safeguard the public’s confidence in our profession because when trust is broken, effective communication becomes a greater challenge to achieve. Thus, the narratives, dialogues, and information being fed to the public should be scrutinized and verified to ensure that the state of the nation is accurately portrayed.

In this era of digitalization and social media, the state of the nation is no longer determined solely by how government policies and corporate actions are enacted, it is heavily influenced by public discourse and perceptions. As public relations professionals, you are at the forefront of conveying critical information, maintaining social cohesion in times of crisis, and can be active partners of the government in promoting efforts to advance policies on social welfare, economic development, and even environmental sustainability.

You wield words and narratives that can shape perceptions, inspire actions, and foster powerful connections. It is your responsibility to safeguard the integrity of the information you communicate with the utmost professionalism and discernment.

Public relations is not merely about image management and community engagement. It is an essential force that propels progress, playing a vital role in building and maintaining relationships between governments, private organizations, and the general public.

May you continue to be at the forefront of managing ethical communication strategies while promoting accurate information, ensuring that the community is properly informed, and empowering people to make educated decisions.

Thank you, and may this Congress achieve remarkable success in our collective effort to foster national development through effective public relations. Together, let us champion public causes and advocate for the betterment of the Filipino people, securing a progressive Philippines for the generations that follow.

Isang Luntiang Pilipinas sa ating lahat!